Solar Green Energy UKGBC

Broadband and green energy set for spending surge

Broadband and green energy infrastructure will be at the centre of a spending programme expected to be announced by the UK government before summer.

Chancellor Rishi Sunak and prime minister Boris Johnson are preparing a stimulus package to kickstart the economy and counter the expected recession.

Advances in energy systems, monitoring usage with sensors and better understanding of the impact of building fabric all have a huge role to play in the clean energy movement.

Companies are preparing to get to the front of the queue in response to the call for oven-ready projects that the public purse can fund in the coming months. These include the Dig for Britain movement to improve the country’s internet led by Telcom Group and others.

An emergency budget statement is pencilled in for the week commencing 6 July. The budget is also expected to outline measures to help British-based technology firms, many of whom complained at the start of lockdown of a lack of support from government.

The green energy drive, dubbed the green industrial revolution, is expected to act as a return-to-work support package for workers made redundant because of Covid-19. There will be reskilling for insulation upgrade, carbon capture and offshore wind.

The UK Green Building council is among those calling for a change in tack when the economy picks up again.

Julie Hirigoyen, chief executive of UKGBC, said: “A clean, inclusive and resilient recovery from coronavirus is vital if we are to learn the lessons from this health emergency and ramp up action to tackle the climate and ecological crisis and reduce social inequality. The built environment can play a pivotal role in helping the country to build back better. We can unlock huge opportunities for resilient recovery through measures such as introducing ambitious new build standards; prioritising home energy efficiency; and investing in urban greening.”

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